Title: Improving access and equity in education and training for vulnerable populations

Date: Friday, 21st October 2022

Time: 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM Mauritius time (GMT+4)

Venue: Le Méridien Île Maurice

Storyline: Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, African countries had made landmark policy reforms that led to improvements in learner enrolments across the education spectrum. The expansion in physical infrastructure has, however, not kept pace with the surge in enrolments and according to ACET (2022), free tuition fails to benefit all population segments, with girls, children with special needs, and those in rural communities often left out. Recent research evidence around the impact of Covid-19 on Africa’s educational systems points to the need to rethink the concept of infrastructure to include both physical and remote access to education, especially for the vulnerable groups of learners, and innovatively targeting funding for education. This calls for the need to adequately demonstrate how funding mechanisms will enhance education for the most vulnerable learners (ADEA, AU/CIEFFA, & APHRC, 2021). Girls and women face many barriers to education, which calls for, among other things, reducing the unequal domestic burden and improving home learning environments for girls, modernizing learning institutions to be all-inclusive, providing more career guidance, mentoring, and coaching opportunities, encouraging stronger gender-sensitive policies and promoting accessible digital training programs. The need to enhance partnerships and sustain coordination with the private sector continues to grow. Countries can also benefit from tools (e.g., FAWE/AU Gender Responsive Pedagogy for TVET & UNESCO guide for embedding inclusion and equity in educational policy) and platforms (e.g., ADEA ICQNs and AU CESA Clusters) for peer learning and knowledge exchange on this important area.


  • Agree on the roadmap to translate the policy-level commitments into actions to improve equitable and inclusive access to quality education for learners in vulnerable populations.
  • Identify modalities of implementing Covid-19 recovery strategies targeting learners in vulnerable populations.
  • Share knowledge, experience, and best practices, and strengthen partnerships to support efforts aimed at enhancing access, equity, and inclusion with a focus on learners in vulnerable populations.
  • Identify the best strategies in using data and evidence to design and improve programmes targeting learners in vulnerable populations. 

Expected outcomes

  • Agreement on the action roadmap to build resilient education systems to deliver equitable and inclusive quality education to learners from vulnerable populations.
  • Awareness of innovative approaches to improve access, equity, and inclusion to quality education for learners in vulnerable populations, informed by the Covid-19 experience and mitigation strategies.      
  • Improvements in stakeholder partnerships to support governments as they align their policies and budgets with the TES commitments to action (CtA) and the roadmap.
  • Ways to prioritize gender and vulnerable group considerations in education based on data and evidence. 

Moderator: Jawara Gaye, Lead Global Education Specialist, Economic & Social Infrastructure, Islamic Development Bank (IsDB)


  • Ms. Mary Sichangi, Coordinator, ADEA ICQN on Mathematics and Science Education, Kenya
  • Mr. Sylvain Mudahinyuka, Project Officer, ADEA ICQN on Teaching and Learning

Expert perspective: Thomas Ongolo, GIZ Regional Disability Advisor, Global Project Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities (virtual)

Policymaker response: Ms. C. Weston, Director, Curriculum Development and Quality Improvement (FET), Ministry of Basic Education, South Africa


  • Ms. Epha Ngota, PSO - TDSE, Kenya National Examinations Council (TBC)
  • FAWE: Practical experiences based on the equity and equality case of an intervention implemented in Mali and Zanzibar. 
  • Julie Kornfeld, Chief of Staff, Building Tomorrow, Inc., USA
  • Anna Murru, VVOB: Practical experiences focusing on quality enhancement in TVET
  • Dr Coffi AGOSSOU Director, ILO Country Office for Madagascar, Comoros, Mauritius and Seychelles